Lando Norris, Max Verstappen, Yas Marina, Abu Dhabi, 2021

Norris should “do the same as always” in race with title contenders – Seidl

2021 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

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Lando Norris should stick to his instincts and not over-think any potential interaction with championship rivals Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton in today’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, says his team principal.

The McLaren driver qualified third behind pole-winner Verstappen and second-placed Hamilton, whose championship fight will be decided in the race at Yas Marina.

In his parc ferme interview immediately after qualifying, Norris admitted he was “nervous” about lining up behind the top two and wasn’t sure what approach he’d take to battling them.

Norris later said he doesn’t want “to be the guy that gets too involved” and potentially decide the championship outcome. However McLaren team principal Andreas boss Seidl believes Norries needs to put such concerns aside to achieve the team’s targets for the race.

“Whenever you are in such situations, the most important thing is to just do the same as you always do,” Seidl explained.

“Because if you try to be too cautious, for example going into the first corners, or you try to orchestrate something, you take this intuitive feeling the drivers are having, the experience they are having, and then it starts to get dangerous.

“I think that must be the approach also for Lando. In the end, the objective is clear that we want to score another good result for us as a team, and we want to get back in P5 in the drivers championship with Lando. In order to do that, we need a good result. And that’s how we approach it.”

Norris has a potential tyre advantage against Hamilton at the start, as the McLaren driver will line up on the grippier soft compound tyre while the Mercedes driver qualified on the more durable medium.

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2021 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

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Ida Wood
Often found in junior single-seater paddocks around Europe doing journalism and television commentary, or dabbling in teaching Photography back in the UK. Currently based...

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7 comments on “Norris should “do the same as always” in race with title contenders – Seidl”

  1. Agree with Seidl. Lando should pass Lewis and hold him up so his friend Max can win the title. ;)

  2. Or he should pass and hold up Max so McLaren’s close buddy Mercedes can win.😉

    1. Fair enough but Max is also on the softs so that will not be an easy task.

  3. The driver starting from P3 should try to pass the preceding one (P2) at the earliest (or best) opportunity, and also the one at P1 if the chance also arises

    If Lando Norris doesn’t fight for P2 at the start, trying to not get involved in the WDC fight etc etc, he will lose his status as a racing driver and all my respect, FWIW.

  4. The problem is that Norris has been problematic and sometimes dirty for all the drivers but Hamilton who is the only driver able to overtake him easily from the inside. The only time he fought Hamilton was in Sochi were he was running for his first win. Other than that he has been a proper fanboy all the season. I doubt that he will have the same cautious approach if other drivers were in contention for the title.

  5. Imagine the flak when Norris crashes with lewis during the start.
    The British media probably even forget to paint the mad max story.
    (for a week or so).

    Norris passing Lewis on the outside and Lewis trying the Hamilton move (c) on him.
    Stewards could hardly ignore such behaviour again.

  6. BLS (@brightlampshade)
    12th December 2021, 10:52

    I think what Seidl says in public and in private will be very different. He knows that a mistake which damages either Lewis or Max’s car will create very bad PR for McLaren. There’s very little reward for the risk given Ferrari’s starting position also.

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